It’s Thanksgiving weekend here in Canada and I don’t have any family here in town so it was just myself, my daughter and I invited my buddy Mr. M over for dinner. Because we’re just two, plus a toddler, I couldn’t exactly make a whole turkey so I looked up a few turkey roulade recipes. I decided on this one to compliment the Calvados cocktails I wanted to make. I was grabbing some last minute things at the grocery store, then I could not get my daughter down for her nap, so I let her run around while I worked, but that added up to me running late. I didn’t want to chance making the roulade in a hurry so I decided to make the turkey and the stuffing separately. I browned the meat in my cast iron skillet, then popped it in the oven while I made the stuffing.
Normally, I don’t really like stuffing. In Newfoundland and Labrador, Savory (similar to thyme) is the go to spice for making stuffing, or many people will make Stovetop stuffing. I am not a fan of either, AT ALL. The pungent spices and the mushy texture are major turn offs. I haven’t experimented much with sage, but I thought I would give it a shot and try this recipe. I actually like this stuffing. The sweet, tart of the cranberries adds a nice balance. The gravy on the other hand was a little strange for me. I tasted it on its own and it was a little too tangy for my liking, but combined with the turkey it was pretty good. If I make this dish again I would go with a traditional gravy instead. On the side I made some steamed green beans, and my absolute favourite autumn side dish – Sweet Potatoes with Maple-Pecan Butter. I made two desserts: Mini Pumpkin Cheesecakes and Devil’s Food Cupcakes with Chocolate Cream Cheese Icing. I’ll post those recipes later.
Turkey Roulade with Apple-Cider Gravy
- One 2-1/2-pound boneless turkey breast half, skin removed and butterflied
- 2 1/2 to 2 3/4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
- 5 slices day-old whole-wheat bread, crusts removed and cubed (about 2-1/2 cups)
- 1 medium onion, diced (about 1-1/2 cups), plus 1 cup onion thinly sliced into half-moons
- 1 cup apple cider
- 2 large cloves garlic, minced (about 2 teaspoons)
- 1/2 cup unsweetened dried cranberries
- 1/3 cup chopped pecans
- 3 tablespoons cider vinegar
- 2 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons chopped fresh sage or 3 teaspoons dried, crumbled
- 2 tablespoons canola oil
- 1 teaspoon cornstarch dissolved in 1 tablespoon cold water
- 1/2 teaspoon salt, plus more to taste
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more to taste
- Kitchen twine
Toast the pecans in a small dry skillet over medium-high heat until fragrant, stirring frequently, about 3 minutes; set aside. Preheat the oven to 375°F.
Place the cranberries in a small saucepan and cover with water. Bring to a boil, cook for 1 minute, then remove from the heat, drain, and set aside.
Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large heavy skillet over medium heat. Add the diced onion and cook, stirring, until golden but not blackened, 12 to 15 minutes. Add the garlic and cook another 2 to 3 minutes. Add the bread, cranberries, pecans, 2 tablespoons of the fresh or 2 teaspoons of the dried sage, and 1/2 to 3/4 cup of the broth, depending upon the consistency of the stuffing (you want the mixture to be moistened, but not too wet, since the turkey will release moisture when cooked). Cook over low heat for 2 to 3 minutes, then remove from the heat.
Sprinkle the salt and pepper over both sides of the turkey breast. Spread the stuffing over one side of the turkey, leaving about 1-1/2 to 2 inches uncovered on all sides. Roll up and secure tightly with kitchen twine, trying to keep all the stuffing intact.
Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon oil in a large Dutch oven or medium roasting pan over medium heat until hot. Sear the stuffed turkey breast on all sides until lightly browned, 3 to 4 minutes per side. Sprinkle the sliced onion around the turkey, pour in 1-1/2 cups of the broth, cover tightly and roast in the oven until an instant-read meat thermometer inserted in the thickest part registers 165°F, 60 to 65 minutes. Remove the turkey breast from the oven, transfer to a cutting board, tent with aluminum foil, and let rest while you make the gravy.
Add the cider, 1/2 cup of the broth, the vinegar, and the remaining 2 teaspoons fresh or 1 teaspoon dried sage to the roasting pan, bring to a boil, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the liquid is reduced by one-third, about 10 minutes. Slowly add the cornstarch mixture, stirring constantly, and cook for 3 minutes more. The gravy should not be thick, just slightly thicker than a jus. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Remove the twine from the turkey breast and cut into 1-1/2-inch-thick slices. Serve with the gravy on the side in a gravy boat.
nutrition information (per serving):
Calories (kcal): 400; Fat (g): fat g 12; Fat Calories (kcal): 108; Saturated Fat (g): sat fat g 1.5; Protein (g): protein g 50; Monounsaturated Fat (g): 6; Carbohydrates (g): carbs g 24; Polyunsaturated Fat (g):3.5; Sodium (mg): sodium mg 371; Cholesterol (mg): cholesterol mg 117; Fiber (g): fiber g 2;